What’s happening to our Wedge-tailed eagles?
Could there be fewer than 1000 Tasmanian wedge-tailed eagles in the world?
Wildcare Chair, Ian Lundy and his children, recently participated in a monitoring program that is inviting all Tasmanians to find out. The Lundys were one of over 50 teams who headed out on 29th-31st May each looking for raptors and white cockatoos in one or two 4 km x 4 km squares across Tasmania, for six 10-minute periods per square.
Of his experience, Ian said:
Our survey area was in North Bruny which provided some excellent sites. This is a really worthwhile citizen science project and also a lot of fun to get out and enjoy such a beautiful landscape.
These photos were taken on a beach on the east coast of North Bruny where Ian reported:
No eagles at this site but back at the top of the hill we saw three eagles in the distance, with one flying closer towards us allowing us to get a positive ID. Two other eagles spotted from Dennes Point were at the South East tip of Tinderbox.
This introductory video explains the need for the program, how it works and how you can get involved! The next survey is being held on 19th-21st June. You can find out more and/or sign up here.
There is also a significant educational component to this project with lots of great on-line resources and ‘classes’ about eagle science and adventure.
Ian made good use of these to distract his kids during lockdown.
In the weeks leading up to the survey, there was a series of online learning sessions for kids over a two week period.
As Wedge-tailed eagle specialist, and long time Wildcare supporter Nick Mooney says:
Our essential advantage over most other organisms is our ability to apply our curiosity, not just to survive yourself but to make things better – for other people, and to do that – you’ve got to make the world better.
Programs such as this are a great way to do that.